What is a wine cabinet?
A wine cabinet is a large refrigerated unit designed specifically for the storage of wines for a period of 2-20 years.
A wine cabinet will ensure your wines are kept in a stable and reliable environment for many years, most are fitted with solid doors or UV protected glass doors, vibration free compressors, charcoal filters and there are a few models where you can control the humidity, although wine cabinets do automatically control the humidity to ensure the cork doesn’t dry out.
How many bottles can a wine cabinet hold?
Wine cabinets come in a range of sizes but are designed to maximise capacity – wine cabinets can hold anywhere from 45 right up to 312 Bordeaux bottles in each unit, so there is a range of sizes depending on your collection size and space availability.
Who manufacturers wine cabinets?
We have a range of wine cabinet producers but the main ones are the French manufacturers such as: Avintage, Climadiff and La Sommeliere but there are also a few from Swisscave and Liebherr.
All of the wine cabinet producers are well established manufacturers producing reliable, efficient and robust units designed to with stand the outdoor temperature variations.
What is the life time of a wine cabinet?
It depends on the quality of the components but we would like to see 10-15 years out of all of our wine cabinets, don’t hold us to that though!
Do I have to stack my bottles?
No, we have some units from Swisscave and Dunavox which have full shelving which means you can segregate your wines easier – this does reduce the capacity slightly but you can also take shelves out to stack some bottles.
Stacking can be a pain as we know, the different bottle shapes means makes it difficult to stack them and getting at a particular bottle of wine can be almost dangerous!
How much will the capacity reduce if I stack my bottles?
If you have lots of different shaped bottles, we expect the capacity to reduced by around a 25-30% of the quoted figure. Of course, if your bottles are all Bordeaux style (which is unlikely) you will be able to achieve the quoted figure on the product specification.
Which wine cabinet does Elite Wine recommend?
We recommend Liebherr and Avintage as the premium manufacturers for the wine cabinets as they are very robust units, particularly Avintage come with lots of settings to play with so you can really control the environment – If you did want full shelving, the DX-194.490 from Dunavox is a great option as it can accommodate Champagne bottles between the shelves and is probably one of our most reliable units.
Solid door or glass door?
Wines love complete darkness so a solid door will completely remove the day light and ensure there is complete darkness for your wines to mature in.
However, we do know that these units are often installed in living rooms or kitchens so aesthetics do matter – that’s why most of our wine cabinet producers will make a glass door version which are usually double or even triple glazed and completely UV treated to block out any UV light.
Solid doors do also have the added benefit of reducing energy consumption, glass does allow the cool air to escape easier so you may see the energy consumption is ever so slightly higher for glass door models.
What considerations do I need to make when buying a wine cabinet?
- Before purchasing a wine cabinet, you need to consider where you are going to install it, these units are usually quite big and may not fit through normal door ways so make sure your chosen resting place is accessible.
- If it is going to be installed in the garage, make sure the units have a winter system for the cold English Winters!
- Its always best to plan ahead, is your collection going to increase in a year or so?
- Do aesthetics matter? If not then Climadiff are a great functional wine cabinet, they just don’t have all the bells and whistles Avintage or Liebherr have.
What is a winter system?
A winter system is effectively an internal heating element which introduces warm air when the ambient temperature drops to below a set temperature. This is so the set temperature can be maintained at lower ambient temperatures.